Film Review: Give Me Your Hand

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TURIN, Italy -- Snubbing logic in favor of a piquant concept, "Give Me Your Hand" gets some initial mileage out of its offbeat premise: A pair of chisel-faced identical twins, bakers in a French village, decide to walk to their mother's funeral in Spain. This sets Pascal-Alex Vincent's self-conscious feature debut on the festival road, where it basically belongs. A sensitively told love story should channel it toward gay audiences.

In an opening sequence done with animation, the two young men run off from their picturesque town one night and hit the road. Why the secrecy and why they can't just buy a train ticket are never explained in a film that plays irritatingly fast and loose with realism.

Antoine (Alexandre Carril, sporting a devilish scar) and Quentin (Victor Carril, quieter, more sensitive) look a tad too mature to be constantly quarreling like 5-year-olds. Their childish, knock-down fights, which become quite tiring, do however offer cinematographer Alexis Kavyrchine a good excuse to photograph their fine physiques set off against forested mountains and bubbling streams.

The brothers' main issue may be individualizing themselves, something they finally do through sexual choices. While their magnetism attracts members of both sexes in lighthearted adventures, the only encounter with any dialogue attached is Quentin's soulful bonding with a handsome young migrant worker (Samir Harrag). This creates an unbridgeable rift with Antoine, who remains scornful of his brother's homosexual tastes.

Do Quentin and Antoine represent ego and alter-ego? Or two warring desires inside the individual? This is the kind of hazy film open to almost any interpretation.

Venue: Turin International Film Festival
Local Films, Busse & Halberschmidt
Cast: Victor Carril, Alexandre Carril, Anais Demoustier, Samir Harrag, Katrin Sass, Fernando Ramallo
Director: Pascal-Alex Vincent
Screenwriters: Martin Drouot, Pascal-Alex Vincent
Producers: Nicolas Breviere, Markus Halberschmidt
Director of photography: Alexis Kavyrchine
Music: Tarwater
Editor: Dominique Petrot
International sales: Wide Management, Paris
No rating, 79 minutes
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